Saturday, June 24th
Energy Firm Touts High-Producing Well
An Oklahoma energy firm is pleased with the initial output of a McClain County well. EOG Resources, which is based in Houston but has an office in Oklahoma City, reports a well near Newcastle is producing 1,000 barrels of oil and nearly 1,300 Mcf of natural gas per day. The Warhawk Well is in Sn section 7 of Township 9 North, Range 4 West a few miles northwest of Newcastle. It is in the Woodford formation of the South Central Oklahoma Oil Province (SCOOP). The well was drilled to a true vertical depth of nearly 9,000 feet. It took about four months to drill the well. It was spudded in January and completed April 25th.
State rig count steady; nation's count declines
Oklahoma's rig count held steady over the last week. There are 42 active drillings operating which is down from 60 rigs working at this same time last year. Nationwide the rig count stands a 682 which is off six from last week and down from 753 a year ago.
Chix Rodeo Now Set for Tonight and Tomorrow Afternoon
Rain postponed the opening of the annual Chickasha rodeo last night. Officials with the Chickasha Rodeo Foundation say there will still be two performances. Tonight's rodeo will get underway as scheduled, with Grand Entry at 8 p.m. and the winner of the queen contest will be announced. The second performance will be at 2 o'clock tomorrow afternoon. For those who purchased advance tickets, they can be used at either performance. Also, The Chickasha Rodeo Parade will take place as scheduled this afternoon in downtown Chickasha, starting at 4 o'clock.
Thousands of Ladybudgs Released into Duncan Community Garden
Here's an interesting story out of Duncan. Thousands of ladybugs have been released into the city's community garden -12,000 of them! While most bugs are considered pests and nuisances, ladybugs actually serve as an organic pesticide. Sheila DeCarlo is the manager of Duncan's Think Ability Garden. She tells The Duncan Banner that the ladybugs eat the eggs of aphids, spiders, and whiteflies which do a lot of damage to vegetable plants. She says ladybugs take to plants with a little bit of water on the leaves. And, like most creatures including humans, they don't like being in the heat of the day, so they try to find a place to hide from the sun.
Talk Show Topics
Here's what we're talking about this weekend. Chickasha Police Chief GG Music is our guest on the KOOL Konversation. And Zack Bowles, director of the Like Skills Institute is the guest on Real Estate Today. Find podcasts of both programs under the Community tab on this website.
Funeral for Marilyn Hudson, 80, of Edmond and formerly of Chickasha will be at 10:00 a.m. Monday, June 26th at Ferguson Funeral Home.
Friday, June 23rd
Broadband Listening Tour Continues
Officials with the Oklahoma Broadband Office continue their work to get information about high-speed internet deserts in the Sooner State. Representatives are criss-crossing the state holding listening tours to hear from residents about their issues with slow internet. Mike Sanders is the director of the state broadband office. He told members of the state broadband commission this week that it will be several months before a statewide map will be available showing which areas have the biggest need for the service. He estimates there are nearly 800,000 Oklahomans who have inadequate connectivity to the world wide web.
Saddle Up for the Chickasha Rodeo
Grab your jeans and cowboy hats and ride out to the annual Chickasha rodeo this weekend. The Chickasha Rodeo Foundation presents its 84th annual rodeo at the Grady County Fairgrounds. Cowboys will try to tame the rough stock with bronc busting and bull-riding, and will work to beat the clock and other contestants in speed events that include barrel racing, calf-roping, steer wrestling and team roping. The rodeo is both tonight and tomorrow night, with the Grand Entry starting at 8:00 p.m. both nights. The rodeo parade will wind down Chickasha Avenue at 4 o'clock tomorrow afternoon.
'Christmas in July' to Feature New Parade
The Chickasha Chamber of Commerce and the Economic Development Council are getting ready for the annual Christmas in July celebration. A new event is called The Parade of Stars and Handlebars, which is a patriotic parade that will be held the morning of Independence Day, July 4th. It is a family-oriented event inviting residents to ride their bicycles and ATVs through Shannon Springs Park. The event is open to families and any groups or clubs. There is a registration fee with proceeds benefitting USO Oklahoma. Fees are $10 per person or family and $25 for groups. Participants can register on-line by Monday, July 3rd at chickashachamber.com or, register the morning of Tuesday, July 4th at 9 a.m. in the front parking lot of the park. The parade will start at 10 a.m. All entries will receive coupons for a free snow cone from Jungle Ice Fun Zone. Later that night will be the annual fireworks display at the park.
Patriotic Groups Unite
A couple of national patriotic groups are joining efforts to promote their missions of supporting military veterans and families. The Patriot Guard Riders and Wreaths Across America have signed a memorandum of understanding to build stronger awareness for their missions while supporting events across the country. The Patriot Guard Riders is a national non-profit group founded in 2005 and there are members in all 50 states. The group supports first responders as well as military veterans. Wreaths Across America was founded in 2007 and is known for its annual wreath-laying ceremony each year. Their mission is to remember the fallen, honor those who serve, and teach future generations the value of freedom. This year, the annual wreath-laying ceremony will be Saturday, December 16th.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $69.51 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $74.14.
Natural gas is $2.61 per million BTUS.
Gold is $1,927 and silver is $22.55.
Obituaries today include 43-year old Shannon Cooper-McAlester of Oklahoma City. Funeral will be held at 11:30 next Tuesday morning, June 27th at Western Avenue Baptist Church in Oklahoma City. Arrangements are with Brown-Thomas Funeral Home.
Thursday, June 22nd
Verden Police Arrest Suspected Drug Traffickers
Two suspected drug traffickers are behind bars after Verden police noticed a couple of suspicious vehicles in town. This happened just after midnight Tuesday when an officer saw a car and a motorcycle driving around town. The vehicles pulled over at the water department and the officer went to talk to them. A post on the Verden Police Department's Facebook page indicates the officer detected an odor of marijuana in the car and the driver indicated it was not hers, but it belonged to the man on the motorcycle. He did not have his medical marijuana license with him. Following a routine check, both individuals had had their driver's licenses suspended. It was also found that the car had a false license plate. The officer then saw the motorcycle rider toss a bag near the front tire of the car. The bag contained drugs which field tested positive for meth and Fentanyl. Authorities arrested 48-year old Daniel Clay Mahan and 36-year old Kristi Skinner, both of Oklahoma City. The social media post indicates that Mahan has a lengthy criminal record, including convictions of drug charges and assault with a deadly weapon. Both suspects were booked into the Grady County Jail on complaints of aggravated trafficking. Mahan has had his initial appearance and he remains in jail on a $100,000 bond. Skinner has not yet been formally charged.
Mental Health Grant Approved for Chix Police Department
Police officers and other first responders often find themselves in dangerous and even deadly situations. There has been a concerted effort to help them deal with the mental strain of their occupations. This week, the Chickasha City Council signed off on a grant which will pay for mental health counseling for police officers. Police Chief G.G. Music requested a $4,000 grant from Oklahoma Electric Co-op's Operation Round-up grant program. It will pay for mental health counseling services for not only police officers but also their family members. Music detailed several incidents that officers have had to deal with over the last several years: a teenager killed by his neighbor; a woman stabbed to death by her husband; an officer-involving shooting where more than 200 rounds were fired and an officer was permanently disabled; and several Fentanyl related deaths and overdoses.
More from this week's city council meeting
Chickasha city hall will be getting some upgrades on its fire protection system. The city council this week accepted a nearly $26,000 bid from Alpine Fire Protection of Yukon to make the improvements. The council also approved the city’s annual contract with the Grady County Criminal Justice Authority which operates the Grady County Jail to house individuals arrested by Chickasha police. Also approved was the declaration of a number of items at the city animal shelter as surplus and the authorization of the city manager to dispose of the items. Some of the inventory includes traps that don't work, damaged fiberglass cat kennels; office equipment, and non-working exit signs.
Visitors Center to Open Downtown Chix
Downtown Chickasha will soon have an official visitors center. The city council, under its municipal authority title, approved a lease agreement with the Chickasha Community Foundation and Whitney Palesano. Palesano and her family will operate the center which will be known as Downtown Mercantile. The store will be located in the renovated Freight Building near the leg lamp. Palesano, who works for the Chamber of Commerce, will keep her post with the chamber while also operating the visitors center.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $72.53 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $77.12.
Natural gas is $2.60 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,936 and silver is $22.88.
A private memorial service will be held for Deena Jamison, 59, of Chickasha. Arrangements are with Ferguson Funeral Home.
Wednesday, June 21st
Chix Council OK's Intersection Repair; Work May Start Soon
Chickasha officials say work to repair a damaged intersection could start as early as this Friday. The city council last night approved a nearly $288,000 bid from Mayfield Contracting of Clinton to repair the intersection of 14th and Missouri which has been closed since it was damaged after heavy rains earlier this spring. Public Works Director Jim Crosby told the council that the company estimates that it may only take about three weeks to make repairs.
Water distribution upgrade approved; state asked to provide more funds
The council also approved a nearly $570,000 bid to upgrade the water distribution system east of 4th and Missouri, although the approval is subject to the availability of funds. The bid went to Marsau Enterprises of Enid. KOOL/RANCH News reported yesterday that the city was reaching out to the state department of commerce asking the agency to increase a Community Development Block Grant the city is getting to help pay for the project as the estimated cost of the work was about $200,000 more than estimated. The city does have to provide some matching funds, and the council did approve providing an additional $25,000 in order to receive an additional $180,000 from the department of commerce. The state panel will meet next week to consider the request.
Airport project to lift off
The council also approved a nearly $600,000 project for the city's airport. The council awarded a nearly $466,000 contract to Tri City Seal to rehabilitate runways and taxi-ways. The panel also approved a grant application from the Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission to help pay for much of that work.
Panel OK's zoning exemption for animals
The city council did a complete 180 on a previous decision about a zoning exemption to allow horses and goats in the city limits. After denying the exemption last month, the panel voted 6-0 to authorize the move. In a public hearing last night applicant Roosevelt May said they had resolved some differences with neighboring property owners who initially protested the plan, saying the animals would be kept in the back of the seven-acre lot in the 2400 block of S. 24th. He said the family's two daughters are barrel racers and that the horses would be well taken care of. No one spoke against the exemption during the hearing.
No action taken on EDC issue
The council went behind closed doors to get at update from the city attorney regarding the Chickasha Economic Development Council and its use of taxpayer funds. The panel met for an hour and a half in executive session and made no comment other than to say no action would be taken at this time.
Grow Facility Goes Up In Smoke
Fire caused heavy damage to a marijuana grow facility northeast of Chickasha earlier this week. The fire was called in just before 5 o'clock Monday morning at what used to be the pro shop at the former Riverbend Golf Course. The Chickasha fire department was initially called out, then volunteers from Amber, Friend, and Naples were dispatched. Grady County Fire Chief Rodney Gregory says the 5,000 sq. ft. metal building sustained about $20,000 in damage. It was unclear how much of the marijuana was destroyed. He said the fire may have been sparked by an electrical short. Gregory said crews were on the scene for about two hours. Gregory also said crews responded to a grass fire southwest of Pocasset just before noon Monday. Gregory said a burn pile got out of control on CR 2810 west of Highway 81. Pocasset was dispatched and Chickasha was called to assist. Crews were on the scene about an hour. About a half-acre of grassland was scorched.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $70.38 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $75.90.
Natural gas is $2.49 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,943 and silver is $23.31.
Tuesday, June 20th
Chix Officials Ask for More Grant Funds for Water Line Replacement
A few months ago, Chickasha officials announced an effort to improve part of the city's water distribution system. Water lines and fire hydrants in the neighborhood east of 4th and Minnesota need to be replaced. The city has already been approved for a Community Development Block of Grant to help pay for the project. However, the lowest of three bids received was more than $200,000 higher than engineers estimated. Officials are asking the State Department of Commerce for additional funds. While the original construction budget was estimated at $331,000 - the lowest of three bids received was more than $537,000. In a letter from Mayor Chris Mosley to the commerce department dated June 2nd, he's asking for an additional $180,000 and said the city would provide an additional $25,000. Mosley said they could consider slimming down the project, but that it is not a good alternative as existing waterlines are subject to frequent breakages and are undersized. Mosley is expected give an update on the request for additional funds during tonight's city council meeting.
Another public hearing set for request to have horses and goats in the city limits
The council will also hold a second public hearing regarding a special zoning exemption to allow horses and goats in the city limits. The request from Davina and Roosevelt May would allow the animals on seven acres of property in the 2400 block of South 24th. Last month the council unanimously voted against the request after some neighbors protested. The proposal went back to the city's planning commission which recommended the exemption be approved, as it did the first time it was considered.
'Twisters' crew asks for more street closings
The film crew building sets for the filming of the Twister sequel is asking the city for additional street closures next month. Dirt Road Films is requesting that 17th Street between Iowa and Dakota Avenues, and Minnesota Avenue between 16th and 18th Streets be closed from July 1st through July 14th. Upwards of 500 people have been working in the area over the last few weeks.
Resolution to pass new fiscal year budget to be discussed
The council will also consider a resolution to approve the city budget for the upcoming fiscal year, which will start July 1st. The city council meets at 6:30 tonight at city hall.
Businessman, Civic Leader Ron Saxon Dies
Longtime homebuilder and pilot Ron Saxon has died. Saxon was a crop duster who would eventually be involved with the Civil Air Patrol. He opened a real estate office and began building homes in the early 1970s. He served on the Chickasha City Council and the Chamber of Commerce. Saxon was 80 when he passed away last Saturday. Survivors include his wife, Dayliene; and their two sons and their families. A graveside service will be held at 11:00 a.m. Thursday, June 22nd at Fairlawn Cemetery. Arrangements are with Ferguson Funeral Home.
Chix Group Wins State Tourism Awards
Chickasha's Economic Development Council (EDC) picked up some top honors at the State Department of Tourism's Redbud Awards. The EDC won the Merit Award for Outstanding New Attraction for the permanent Leg Lamp in downtown Chickasha. The panel also won for Outstanding Media Coverage for the Nov. 5th grand opening celebration of the leg lamp. News of the leg lamp spread across the country on radio and TV stations and newspapers. The Redbud Awards recognize state tourism attractions, and destination market organizations for their efforts to serve and promote the state's tourism industry.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $71.78 per barrel.
London based Brent crude is $76.61.
Natural gas is $2.63 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,964 and silver is $24.30.
A graveside service for Doris Miller, 82, of Chickasha will be held at 1:00 p.m. Wednesday, June 21st at Fairlawn Cemetery. She was a lab tech for American Optical. Arrangements are with Ferguson Funeral home.
A private memorial service will be held at a later date for Connie Painter, 60, of Chickasha. Arrangements are with Ferguson Funeral Home.
Monday, June 19th
Chix Gets One Bid to Repair Storm-Damaged Intersection
Chickasha city officials are recommending that a Clinton company be awarded a contract to repair the intersection of 14th and Missouri which nearly collapsed following heavy rains earlier this spring. The city's engineering firm is recommending a bid from Mayfield Contracting. It's a nearly $288,000 bid and was the only one that was received. The city council declared an emergency to repair the intersection which has been closed since the damage occurred. Officials said it was apparently due to the failure of the storm sewer system underneath the intersection. Public Works Director John Crosby said parts of the drain underneath both 14th Street and Missouri Avenue will likely have to be replaced. The proposal is on the agenda for tomorrow night's city council meeting.
Verden School Superintendent Discusses Upcoming School Year
Summer vacation for most schools is reaching its halfway point. In Verden, Superintendent Mickey Edwards says teachers will report on Monday, August 7th with the first day of classes on Thursday, August 10th. Edwards says they will have 165 days of instruction. For the first semester, classes will be held Monday through Friday. After the first of the year, they'll have school just four days a week.
Edwards is hoping construction on the new security vestibule at the high school could begin this fall. Voters approved a $675,000 bond issue for the project which Edwards says could begin in October with a completion date perhaps by the end of the school year.
No Tuition, Fee Increases at USAO for Coming Year
USAO students won't be facing tuition or fee increases for the upcoming school year. University regents unanimously voted to keep costs at their current levels. On average, an Oklahoma resident taking 15 credit hours at the university can expect to pay about $4,100 per semester or about $8,200 for the year. President John Feaver said it is the university's duty to ensure that a quality college education remains accessible and affordable for all. First-time students who will be attending full time have the option to pay slightly higher costs and lock in that rate for four years. Students taking 15 credit hours per semester would pay about $4,700 for each term.
Maloney, Richie Take Top Honors at Juneteenth Barbecue Cook-off
We have some follow-up to this past weekend's Juneteenth Celebration at Chickasha's Washita Valley Park. The winners of the barbecue cook-off competition were Phyllis Maloney for her ribs and Terry Richie for his chicken. Both received a $100 cash prize and a medal. The top three placers in the rib division were Maloney in first; Terry Richie in second and Carl Johnson in third. In the chicken division it was Richie in first; Phyllis Maloney in second and Edith Givens in third.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $71.78 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $76.61.
Natural gas is $2.63 per million BTUs.
Gold $1,962 and silver is $24.29.
Funeral service for Becky Stephenson, 58, or of Rush Springs was held at 10:30 this morning at the Southern Oaks Church of Christ. She was the postmaster at Alex for many years. Arrangements were with McRay Funeral Home.
Funeral service for Louis Bryant, 83, of Oklahoma City will be held at 1:00 p.m. Saturday, June 24th, at the First Baptist Church in Snyder. Arrangements are with Brown-Thomas Funeral Home.